Features

Cheech Marin is perhaps best known as half of the famous Cheech and Chong comedy team, but his visit to the University of Wyoming is as an art collector. Selections from his Chicano art collection are on display at the UW Art Museum through November 23.

Marin says his exhibit of small paintings—Chicanitas—represents a variety of styles, but they all give voice to the Chicano, or Mexican-American, experience.

Jennifer Tennican

Jackson-based producers Jennifer Tennican and Rebecca Huntington (who also freelances for WPM) have created a series of short films focusing on adults who are returning to or exploring the arts for the first time. An exhibit of work created by the subjects of Into the Arts is on display at the Teton County Library through the end of September. Tennican and Huntington spoke with Wyoming Public Media's Micah Schweizer.

Labor Day weekend provided a great opportunity for everyone to attend the 5th Annual Snowy Range Music Festival in Laramie.  Highlights of the weekend included the March Fourth Marching Band, and Leftover Salmon with guests musicians Sam Bush and Bill Payne (Little Feat).  Also Travis Tritt, Jalan Crossland, Canned Heat and many more great musicians.  WPR's Paul Montoya was on hand to help MC the event.  Attending enjoyed great music, great food, and lots of sunshine.

Snowy Range Music Festival

This weekend marks the fifth annual Snowy Range Music Festival at the Albany County Fairgrounds. As Wyoming Public Radio’s Micah Schweizer reports, the festival’s organizer has a grand vision, but it’s up to the region’s music lovers to see it fulfilled.

(MUSIC: Tab Benoit)

MICAH SCHWEIZER: Carl Gustafson’s dream hasn’t been without challenges. He started organizing the Snowy Range Music Festival in 2009.

CARL GUSTAFSON: “Here’s how bad it is…the first time that I had this, six weeks later I had a heart attack.”

SCHWEIZER: So why keep going?

Author Ron Carlson new novel “Return to Oakpine” tells the story of four high school buddies reuniting in their fictional Wyoming hometown, now that they’ve reached middle age. 

One character, Jimmy Brand, is dying of AIDS, and he and his friends get their high school garage band back together one last time. Carlson tells Wyoming Public Radio’s Rebecca Martinez that this is a “quieter” book, in which the reader keeps company with these characters.

StoryCorps

This summer, StoryCorps set up a booth in Cheyenne to record Wyomingites interviewing one another and sharing their stories. Today, we’ll hear from a burlesque performer. Her stage name is Stella Fox, and she talks with her fiancée, Jonathan Green, about her burlesque career.

The piece was produced by Wyoming Public Radio’s Willow Belden with interviews recorded at StoryCorps. StoryCorps is a na­tional nonprofit whose mission is to provide Americans of all backgrounds and beliefs with the opportunity to record, share, and preserve the stories of our lives.

The newly formed Wyoming Institute for Humanities Research has encountered a set-back under the University of Wyoming’s new administration.

The previous administration approved $60,000 in grant funding for faculty projects in the humanities. Grants would have funded projects like books, articles, exhibits, or lectures.

But UW President Bob Sternberg Thursday asked the Institute to cancel its request for proposals. Director Eric Sandeen says “the commitment of the university to the humanities stands,” but there will be revisions to the Institute’s financial plan.

Rebecca Martinez

Now, for the latest edition in our occasional series, Upstarts, we’ll hear from a stay-at-home mom who launched a multimedia publishing company from her kitchen table in Laramie. Kati Hime is the owner and editor of three high-quality magazines that focus on life in and across the Cowboy State. Wyoming Public Radio’s Rebecca Martinez reports.

(Dog barking. Hime answers door.)

Kathryn Turner

Wyoming landscape painter Kathryn Turner grew up on Triangle X Ranch in Grand Teton National Park surrounded by dramatic views of her favorite subject, the Tetons.

And in her words, she’s spent the past 20 years trying to do them justice. “And they are challenging! And what makes them challenging is they’re always changing, with the light, with the seasons, with the way the clouds move over them, obscuring them, changing the shadows. So they provide a lifetime of material,” added Turner.

UPDATE Aug. 23, 2013: The money available for grants was based on the promises of the previous University administration. Under President Robert Sternberg, a smaller amount of money will be made available for grants, and the next few months will see revisions to the Humanities Institute plan.

PREVIOUSLY REPORTED:

The newly created Wyoming Institute for Humanities Research will offer University of Wyoming faculty grant funding for long-term projects.

Founding director Eric Sandeen says the Institute has $60,000 to distribute this fall.

mama.indstate.edu

Saturday at 8:00pm on Wyoming Public Radio and Sunday at Noon on Jazz Wyoming.

Jazz legend Marian McPartland, who hosted the eponymous Marian McPartland’s Piano Jazz on NPR for three decades, died peacefully Tuesday night at her home on Long Island, NY. She was 95.

Leon Russell talked with Grady Kirkpatrick ahead of his show in Laramie Aug 6, 2013.

His film and TV credits include the recent Smurfs movies, Shrek 2, and Rugrats, but screenwriter David Weiss also attracts attention for his faith. He grew up a secular Jew, converted to Christianity, and later became an observant orthodox Jew. That’s the subject of his lectures Friday and Saturday at the Chabad Jewish Center in Jackson. Wyoming Public Media’s Micah Schweizer reached Weiss by phone as he was driving from Los Angeles to Santa Monica to work on a script.

New custom bike racks will be popping up across Downtown Laramie this fall.

In response to complaints about parked bicycles cluttering up the sidewalks – chained to trees, garbage cans, and sign posts – the Laramie Main Street Alliance began polling residents and business owners, and collecting data about bike traffic.

Executive Director Trey Sherwood says this October, the Alliance will install colorful new bike racks in the high-traffic areas of downtown.

Douglas is bracing for the 50,000 people that will flood in from around the region for the Wyoming State Fair, which starts Saturday.  Fair staples, such as the Ranch Rodeo, the arm wrestling championship and the fiddle contest are back.  But there will be new events on the schedule, too.  Dock Dogs is a race for canines through an obstacle course.

StoryCorps

This summer, StoryCorps set up a booth in Cheyenne to record Wyomingites interviewing one another and sharing their stories.

Today, we’ll hear from 95-year old Pinedale native Guy Decker, better known as “Bud”. Decker tells his longtime-friend Jim Latta about what it was like to grow up on the Wyoming Frontier.

Produced by Rebecca Martinez with interviews recorded at StoryCorps, a na­tional nonprofit whose mission is to provide Americans of all backgrounds and beliefs with the opportunity to record, share, and preserve the stories of our lives. (storycorps.org.)

Mountain West Voices: “On Walkabout”

Aug 9, 2013

From Mountain West Voices, Clay Scott tells about Laramie’s Paul Taylor. 

Paul Taylor has been on walkabout for most of his adult life. He is an incredibly gifted storyteller and musician, and I met him as he was travelling from Laramie, Wyoming, to a school in Eureka, Montana to hold a week-long story-telling and art workshop.

Gloria Baxter: Professor Emeritus of the University of Memphis School of Dance and Theater, Gloria was invited by The Murie Center of Grand Teton National Park to create an original narrative theater adaptation based on the writings of Olaus and Margaret Murie, pioneers in the American wilderness movement.

Kurt Johnson of Wilson is the author of a new field guide for Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks. Wyoming Public Radio’s Willow Belden spoke with Johnson about the book. He says that while there were already a lot of field guides for those parks, he felt he could still add something.

Grand Teton National Park announced plans to upgrade its pathway system Tuesday. Slated improvements include lengthening the trail by more than two miles and safety enhancements, including signs, path striping, and the addition of a modern style roundabout.

The project will extend the park’s system of bike paths, part of which runs parallel to highway 89. Several smaller safety features have already been installed, such as path striping and better signage.

The Laramie Mural Project has met its fund raising goal for the next year using the popular online crowd-sourcing website, Kickstarter.

Richard Bernstein is an attorney and triathlete who was born blind. He represents disabled clients pro-bono at his family’s law firm outside Detroit, and is an adjunct professor at Michigan State University.

He’s speaking his weekend at the Chabad Jewish Center of Wyoming in Jackson Hole. Bernstein’s talk, called “Vision is Overrated: A Blind Attorney and Athlete” is part of the Chabad Center’s “Distinguished Lecture Series.” He spoke with Wyoming Public Radio’s Rebecca Martinez from his cell phone in Yellowstone National Park.

Although millions of visitors will flock to Yellowstone National Park this summer, Atlantic City-based author and journalist Marjane Ambler is one of the few people who’s lived there when the park is buried in snow.

The former High Country news editor lived with her husband – who drove a snow plow – inside Yellowstone for nine winters during the 1980s and 90s. In her new book, “Yellowstone has Teeth,” Ambler recounts stories of terror and wonder during her time there. She talks with Wyoming Public Radio’s Rebecca Martinez in the studio.

The grazing land of Wyoming is currently filled with young calves out to pasture. Calving season lasts through the spring and early summer in Wyoming and once the calves are born ranchers have to brand them to identify which ranch they belong to. Wyoming Public Radio’s Irina Zhorov attended a branding and found that in the 21st Century, some ranchers are happily keeping up old, social customs during their brandings.

IRINA ZHOROV: Scott Sims’ ranch in the Rock Creek Valley in Southeast Wyoming branded a batch of their calves at the end of June.

prx.org

Writer, musician, and photographer Jessie Veeder reads her essay about visiting a ranch in North Dakota, “There’s Nothing Wilder.”

Laramie Mural Project

The city of Laramie has just received a 25-thousand-dollar grant from the National Endowment for the Arts to help bring more public art to the area.

The grants are designed to improve the quality of life in communities by encouraging creative activities and beautification projects.

Kevin Kallaugher’s (KAL) work for The Sun and The Economist has appeared in more than 100 publications worldwide, including Le Monde, Der Spiegel, Pravda, Krokodil, Daily Yomiuri, The Australian, The International Herald Tribune, The Washington Post, The New York Times, The New Yorker, Time, Newsweek and U.S. News and World Report.

This month, the University of Wyoming will host a field course where students will explore the geographic, historical and religious significance of Heart Mountain in northern Wyoming.

Two educators will split the teaching of the course, one focusing on history, and the other on religion. The latter, Mary Keller, is a historian of religions and a lecturer at U-W. She spoke with Wyoming Public Radio’s Rebecca Martinez from the Big Horn Radio Network in Cody about what makes Heart Mountain so special.

Julianne Couch is the author of Traveling the Power Line, a book about the many energy sources we tap into for our power needs – from oil and gas, to wind, to solar and uranium.

Couch teaches at the University of Wyoming and has also written Jukeboxes and Jackalopes: A Wyoming Bar Journey and Waking Up Western: Collected Essays. She now lives in Iowa but stopped by the studio to talk to Wyoming Public Radio’s Irina Zhorov about her book.

Lenz Collection, Sheridan County Fulmer Public Library Wyoming Room

The Sheridan WYO Rodeo in will host the return of some special guests this year. The Miss Indian America pageant was held during the rodeo from 1953 until 1984 and several past winners will reunite this weekend.

ARCHIVAL TAPE: [Drumming] There’s a town out west where the eye can stretch over the plains from mesa to mountains, where the heart warms in the sunshine of friends and the townspeople can see buffalo from their own backyards. Such a place is Sheridan Wyoming!  

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